4 free agents who fit the mold of Panthers HC Matt Rhule
By Dean Jones
Which available free agents could fit the mold of what Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule looks for in a potential recruit?
We now know what Matt Rhule looks for in a potential player of interest. The Carolina Panthers head coach definitely went after certain traits from an athletic standpoint early and often in free agency and the 2021 NFL Draft, with adaptability another strong feature of what he is trying to build within the roster that proved to be a real benefit during his first campaign at the helm.
Despite the arrival of general manager Scott Fitterer, it would be a surprise to see Rhule move away from this type of method in his second offseason of what began as a pretty substantial rebuild.
The new appointment will obviously have his own ideas on what it takes to be a successful player in the NFL. So it’s vital the pair come up with a cohesive plan with a view to getting the Panthers into postseason contention sooner rather than later.
Plenty of players fit the Carolina Panthers HC’s mold.
There are plenty of free agents this spring that tick the boxes of the type of player Rhule goes after. Much will depend on what sort of finances the Panthers can free up with the salary-cap being what it is thanks to COVID-19, but if Carolina can hit big with their incomings between now and the start of training camp, it will stand them in enormously good stead.
With that being said, let’s take a look at four free agents that could be targeted by Rhule and the Panthers if last year’s recruitment process is any indication.
Player No. 1
Yannick Ngakoue – DE/OLB
- 2020 team – Baltimore Ravens
To say Yannick Ngakoue has an eventful 2020 season would be something of an understatement. The edge rusher was traded by the Jacksonville Jaguars to the Minnesota Vikings prior to the campaign, but Mike Zimmer’s men got off to a disastrous start that eventually resulted in the player being shipped to the Baltimore Ravens.
All this uncertainty and unsettling was bound to come across on the field. Ngakoue did manage eight sacks despite all this upheaval. But his pursuit of earning top dollar this spring is now in question.
If the price is right, the Panthers would consider it. The former third-round pick is athletic, can play multiple positions, and is a force to be reckoned with when firing on all cylinders.
Adding Ngakoue to a pass-rush that also consists of Brian Burns, Yetur Gross-Matos, and Derrick Brown is a mouth-watering proposition.